11 Sep 2006

Samoa opposition party owes fees to NZ-based lawyer

3:35 pm on 11 September 2006

A Samoan New Zealand-based lawyer, Leulua'iali'i Olinda Woodrooffe, has threatened to take legal action against the Samoa Democratic United party, or SDUP, as a result of her legal fees over an election petition not being paid.

Leulua'iali'i says the party has owed her legal office in Auckland, New Zealand, more than 5,000 US dollars in unpaid fees.

The lawyer told the Samoa Observer newspaper this had happened when she was approached to represent one of the SDUP party's unsuccessful candidate, Leota Leulua'iali'i Ituau Ale's, petition against a government MP, Fonotoe Pierre Lauofo, who is a lawyer.

However, the case was never heard in court because the petitioner had decided to withdraw his petition.